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Facts About Divorce in Texas: Texas Legal

Every state handles divorces differently, but here are five key facts to keep in mind when contemplating whether to file for divorce in Texas.

  1. You must live apart for at least six months prior to filing.
  2. A spouse cannot be served with legal papers while he or she is out of town unless it is during normal business hours.
  3. All spouses must give written consent to the court granting the divorce.
  4. Spouses must wait three days after giving notice to each other before either party files for divorce.
  5. Both parties must agree to the terms of the settlement agreement.
Divorce in Texas is a Lengthy Process.

In Texas, a divorce is never really over. Even though a couple of signs and paperwork to make it official, there are many things left to do. A divorce isn't finalized until at least 60 days have passed since the filing of the divorce papers. This gives both parties time to come up with a settlement agreement and resolve any outstanding issues.

The process of getting divorced in Texas is lengthy and complicated. There are numerous legal steps involved, including a hearing before a judge, signing documents, and paying fees. And even after everything is done, there are still some important things to take care of. For example, each party must file a "final decree," which ends the marriage. Then, each party needs to pay court costs. Finally, each party must sign off on a property division document.

While the length of the process varies based on what happens during the course of a case, most divorces end within one year. However, it can often take several months or longer than expected.

No Legal Separation.

Texas doesn’t recognize legal separation. Even though you live separately from your spouse, all property acquired during the relationship belongs to both parties. All debts incurred during the marriage belong to both spouses. If one party wants to file bankruptcy, he or she must do so jointly with the other spouse. And finally, neither party can change his or her name without the consent of the other. In short, you are still married until you are legally separated.

“No-Fault” Divorce in Texas.

Texas law allows for "no-fault" divorce, which means the spouses filing for divorce do not have to prove any wrongdoing or fault on the part of the opposite spouse. This type of divorce is often referred to as a "quickie divorce," since it takes less time to obtain than traditional divorces.

However, a judge may consider fault when deciding how to divide up the couple's assets. For example, if one party has spent money frivolously during the marriage, the court may decide that he or she deserves less of the marital estate. In addition, the court may award alimony, child support, or attorney fees based on the circumstances surrounding the case.

Divorce in Texas is not a DIY job.

Getting divorced is a complicated process, especially if there are children involved. Attorneys attend school for many years to learn about all that the legal system entails. In addition to learning about laws and procedures, attorneys must study psychology, family dynamics, child development, financial issues, and much more.

While you can technically represent yourself, doing so can be a difficult process. An experienced attorney can help you navigate the legal system and communicate your wants and desires effectively. If emotions run high, your lawyer can be your voice throughout the entire process.

Even if your divorce becomes emotional — both parties are upset and angry — your lawyer can be an impartial party who can remain calm throughout the whole process. However, before you hire an attorney make sure you interview several. Let them know what your goals and objectives are.

An experienced divorce attorney in Harris County, Galveston County, Fort Bend County, Montgomery County, Brazoria County, Houston, Sugar Land, Missouri City, and Stafford, Texas at Thornton Esquire Law Group, PLLC, can provide guidance and offer advice throughout the entire process. Contact us today at www.thorntonesquirelawgroup.com for a free consultation.

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